The Tampa bay Rays have begun building their 2020 roster and one of the first pieces of business conducted was the trading of outfielder Tommy Pham and outfielder Jake Cronenworth to the San Diego Padres in exchange for outfielder Hunter Renfroe, minor league infielder Xavier Edwards, and a player to be named later.
Pham was a key piece of the 2019 Rays, helping them reach the post season and take the Houston Astros to five games in the ALCS.
Pham battled through various nagging injuries throughout last season but managed to play in 145 games.
Pitcher Blake Snell commented on the trade on the Twitch stream “We gave up Pham for Renfroe and a damn slapstick prospect”?
Snell has since apologized for his comments, but went to say that “He (Pham) was the swag of our team. He lifted a lot of players up with just his presence, and made other guys more swaggy.”
Snell said that there was no offense meant to Edwards, he was just sad to see Pham traded.
Pham hit .273 with 21 home runs and drove in 68 runs last season. In the playoffs, Pham hit.360 with two homers and three runs driven in.
Pham said he was sad to go and enjoyed his time in Tampa.
In outfielder Hunter Renfroe, the Rays are getting one of the power hitters in the game.
Renfroe just 27, hit 33 homers last season, which was seventh in the National league, and that was the most home runs hit by a Padre since Adrian Gonzalez hit 40 in 2009.
Renfroe is a power guy who plays good defense, but his overall game is not as good as the game of Tommy Pham. The Rays lose some team speed adding Renfroe and his base running needs a lot of work.
Renfroe had a great first half of the season hitting 27 homers before the All-Star break. Renfroe battled elbow and ankle injuries the second half of the season causing his production to slip, as Renfroe hit just six homers while batting .216.
Edwards played in Class A last seeason at Lake Elsinore and Fort Wayne hitting .322 with one home run and 34 runs batted in. Edwards also had 34 stolen bases.
Edwards was voted to the Midwest League post season All-Star team, and was voted the best defensive second basemen.
Edwards is ranked as the No. 72 overall prospect in MLB, and was the No. 5 overall prospect in the Padres organization. Edwards is a couple of years wavy from joint the big league club in Tampa.
The Rays will save over $5 million dollars in the trade as Pham was due around $8 million in 2020, while Renfroe’s salary is right around $3 million dollars.
The Rays outfield on paper for 2020 looks like this from left to right. Austin Meadows in left, Kevin in center, and Hunter Renfroe in right.